We end the year with a special treat as hosts Eric Newman, Medaya Ocher, and Kate Wolf reveal their Best of 2018 selections. Eric, Daya, and Kate go high and also low with their favorite books, films, TV shows, podcasts (present company excluded), art shows, and one category so scandalous it's best kept a secret (for now). So, All Hail King Paimon and the Combahee River Collective; as well as authors Azareen Van Der Vliet and Rebecca Makkai, the two previous guests who made the list! Please enjoy our look back at the year that was; and make sure to catch Eric, Daya, and Kate's sage advice for 2019 at the end of the show.
Author John Wray joins co-hosts Medaya Ocher and Kate Wolf to read from and discuss his critically-lauded new novel, Godsend; which has found its way onto many best of 2018 lists. Godsend tells the story of Aden, a young woman from Santa Rosa who travels to the Pakistan/Afghanistan border region shortly before 9/11, converts to Islam, disguises herself as a male and joins the Taliban as a fighter. John Wray tells us the almost-equally-amazing backstory to the novel, which stems from his time in Afghanistan as a reporter for Esquire; and his motivations for immersing himself so completely in Aden's world.
Also, author and podcast host Karina Longworth returns to recommend Angelica Houston's second memoir, Watch Me.
A double dose of SoCal culture, from classic Hollywood in the 1930s & '40s to the wasteland of the '90s. First up, hosts Eric Newman, Medaya Ocher, and Kate Wolf welcome back Karina Longworth to the show. Previously, Karina talked about her hugely popular podcast, You Must Remember This, which tells tales of old Hollywood. Now she returns to discuss her equally intriguing book, Seduction: Sex, Lies, and Stardom in Howard Hughes Hollywood that profiles the lives of women involved with the mogul, filmmaker, and playboy; and exposes the routine damage done by male power in classic Tinseltown, #ThemToo. Then Nikki Darling drops by to talk about her debut novel, Fade Into You; a coming-of-age tale set in suburban nowhere during the dire days of the early '90s.
Author Julietta Singh troubles the boundaries that we imagine in and through the body, recuperating it as a porous site marked by flows betwen the internal and external, the self and others. In a wide-ranging conversation about her new book, No Archive Will Restore You, Singh and hosts Eric Newman, Medaya Ocher, and Kate Wolf touch on gender, sexuality, parenting and navigating the world in and as a body.
Also, LARB's Medaya Ocher recommends her favorite short story from this past year, The Cafe by Kristen Gleason, which appeared in the Romance Issue of LARB's quarterly journal.